Magic Kingdom Vice President Dan Cockerell to retire

Apr 25, 2018 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Wednesday April 25, 2018 2:13pm ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

According to sources within the company, 49 year old Magic Kingdom Vice President Dan Cockerell will retire next month.

Dan became the Magic Kingdom Vice President in 2015 during a reshuffle which saw long-time Magic Kingdom VP Phil Holmes move to the Studios VP role in a swap. Prior to that, he was the Vice President of Epcot during his 26 year Disney career.

Apparently Dan will start a speaking and consulting company, with plans to travel.

No word yet on a replacement, and Dan's final day will be May 11 2018.

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TrojanUSCMay 04, 2018

He'd have at least three BIG levels to get through before getting to Burbank. From the VP of a park, you have SVP of operations, then President of WDW, finally they now have a level between the division chairman and the resort President.

tirianMay 04, 2018

Good point. I was hoping he’d eventually be VP in Burbank.

WEDwaydatamoverMay 02, 2018

Good luck with that! I think there are close to 180 episodes. The best I'd imagine are toward the beginning but I can't say for certain. I've only heard a handful or two. He's not Adam Carolla. Common.

brb1006May 02, 2018

Thanks, I will check out his podcast soon.

WEDwaydatamoverMay 02, 2018

Hi brb1006!

brb1006May 02, 2018

Link to it?

WEDwaydatamoverMay 02, 2018

His father Lee has a great podcast by the way. I too thought Dan was being primed for Georgies position. But then I see Phil returning back to MK one day... There is still damage to be had. He should hang up his teeth and call it a day.

TrojanUSCMay 02, 2018

His dad, for his part, was also a great leader at encouraging people to do their jobs well, showcasing the impact they can have on a day to day basis, making them feel empowered. He was a great leader. What I had problems with, as did many others, was on the actual operations side of the job he was responsible for. Cutting hours, homogenizing food sourcing, etc. Took much from the hands of area leaders and corporatized it.

jakemanMay 02, 2018

Just gonna put a tag in here: @ford91exploder

Kman101May 02, 2018

Thanks for sharing that! THAT is how you lead.

Kman101May 02, 2018

Aw, great story! He does sound like a really nice guy.

IowaHawks7May 02, 2018

there is a very famous story about Dan when he first became a VP a number of years ago. He was walking backstage and began talking with a Custodial Cast Member who had been with the company for nearly 25 years. They began to talk about their roles and what this cast memeber did specifically on a daily basis. Long story short Dan found out when her next shift was and was waiting for her in a Custodial White Uniform at the clock in location before her next shift. He then shadowed her for 3/4 hours and found out exactly what she did and how she did it. He was a good one who will be missed.

wannabeBelleMay 02, 2018

I met Dan very briefly a number of years ago. I was looking for my favorite band that was performing at DHS at that time. It was a special EMH offering as President Obama had come into MK a few hours earlier for a speech that was done on Main Street. Obviously MK had to be closed off so EMH was quickly added for DHS and EPCOT for that night. I had gone over to the sound booth to see if they had the schedule for the band. A bunch of people were in the booth and one gentleman came over and we were discussing the act in question when Dan walked over, asked if he could help and pulled out a copy of a typed up schedule, found the information I needed and was so gracious about it!!!! I thanked him and went on my happy way, very excited that I had met Dan. He was very sweet, didn't put on airs or lord it over anyone else that he was with and yes as another poster said he is cute!! Sad to lose one of the good ones!! Marie

WEDwaydatamoverMay 01, 2018

At the end of the day who damaged the Magic Kingdom more? Phil or Dan? Clearly Phil. While both are smiling suits, I don't think Dan has cut a serious "wreckage ribbon" in his Disney career? He gave us Duffy the Bear but what else am I missing? Thats hardly a slaughter and I think it sums him up in a nutshell. On the other hand Phil runs the gamut. The resort is in a long over due upswing but I worry that they are cramming too much, too quickly and not making things timeless enough for the next 50 years. Sometimes it feels like a 9 year old is in creative control at WDW. No diss to 9 year olds. You said, we listened- Lee Cockerall